About Our Collections

Steenbock Library provides access to an outstanding research-level collection of agriculture, life sciences, veterinary medicine, and human ecology materials.  The library holds more than 124,000 books and over 493,000 government publications, and has current subscriptions to hundreds of print and electronic journals.

Subject Areas

The library collects in the areas of animal behavior, bacteriology, biochemistry, biotechnology, botany, community and environmental sociology, ecology, entomology, evolutionary biology, food science, forestry, genetics, human and animal nutrition, landscape architecture, natural resources, ornithology, plant and animal anatomy, primatology, systematics, wildlife and fisheries management, veterinary medicine and zoology, in addition to traditional agricultural subjects such as horticulture, dairy science, and soil science.

The collection also includes fashion, textile arts and sciences, and interior design materials in support of programs in the School of Human Ecology.  Steenbock Library also oversees the reading room collection of the School of Veterinary Medicine.

Special Collections

Steenbock Library owns notable collections in a number of specialized subjects such as cookbooks and cookery, horses and horsemanship, pigeon breeding and racing, plant pathology, and primatology.  It has one of the finest collections of historical beekeeping materials in the world.

Special areas within the agriculture collection include soil surveys and seed catalogs.

Many of the materials in special collections are integrated into the regular collections at Steenbock Library while rarer items are housed in the environmentally controlled vaults in the Memorial Library Department of Special Collections.

Government Documents

As a federal government depository, Steenbock Library’s government documents collection contains a virtually complete collection of the publications of the U. S. Department of Agriculture, the USDA Census of Agriculture, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

The library also has many agricultural and life sciences publications from other federal agencies, Wisconsin and other state governments, extension programs and experiment stations of the land grant universities, foreign governments, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations, and other international organizations.

Digital Collections

Steenbock Library has worked with UW Digital Collections to create searchable digital collections such as:

Steenbock Library also maintains two digital image collections about nonhuman primates: